Romark Labs raises $18M for hepatitis drugs — Tampa, Fla.-based Romark Laboratories, a biotech developing drugs for hepatitis and other conditions, raised $18 million in a an institutional financing. D.E. Shaw Group provided the funding.

Romark says its work on dysregulated cellular pathways led to its discovery of a new drug class known as the thiazolides. The company has already had its first product approved for the treatment of severe diarrhea, and is testing that drug in hepatitis, gastroenteritis and Crohn’s disease as well.

Cubist buys Illumigen Bio, a hepatitis-drug biotech, for $9M — Illumigen Biosciences, a Seattle biotech that develops drugs by studying beneficial human mutations, agreed to be acquired by Cubist Pharmaceuticals for $9 million in cash. The release is here.

Cubist will also pay Illumigen shareholders up to $75.5 million if it reaches certain milestones in the development of Illumigen’s lead compound, a protein-based drug for treating hepatitis C. If Cubist develops Illumigen products for othe viral diseases, payments of up to $117 million could apply. Upon commercialization, Cubist would make additional payments of up to $140 million.

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